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#26 Abby K-9

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 11:33 AM

Until it becomes illegal we are left with two choices:


Three choices. Choice three would be to ask those who make reproductions, particularly if they are members of this board, to please mark their reproductions accordingly. People looking for affordable wings for reenactment or as a place holder in a collection until an original can be obtained will buy them, even if they're marked as reproduction. Those wishing to pass them off as real will likely not buy them. I guess it comes down to what's more important - contributing good reproductions to fill a niche, or making money knowing full and well that a fair number of the items will be sold for a profit by unscrupulous people.

Jeff, who is NobleLoyalGSD on this board, makes very nice reproduction Vietnam-era patches. They look like the real deal. Yet Jeff goes out of his way to mark his pieces as reproductions, by using colored thread and actually putting R and the year he made the patch on the back. In my humble opinion, if you are a reputable dealer of reproduction items, you should mark them as such. If you don't mark them and are using original hallmarks (which may or may not be illegal), then it seems you are more interested in your profits, as you should know well that this is giving others the option of selling them as fake, and that many of them will end up in the hands of new or unsuspecting collectors thinking they were getting an original item. Were I making reproduction pieces, I would want to be certain that they will not be passed off as originals.

#27 none

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 06:59 PM

A few years ago a bill was presented in Congress to require making all copies, reproductions as such, just as gold and silver has to be properly marked. I was at the time an adviser to Congressman Tony Hall and urged that he vote for the bill, he agreed. It never even made it to the floor for a vote. So until this becomes a law you have a lot to worry about other than my wings. Mine can be spotted since they are cast. I also will respond to any question if a wing is mine or not on eBay. Just e-mail me the number and I will let you know. I have also gotten eBay to stop some sales when the seller makes claims its real and I know its not, but most times eBay does nothing. Even when a seller such as the Dallas wing the other day states it a reproduction the bidding is crazy. In France people don't care if it is a reproduction. I know I sell a lot to the French that is my second largest market. So write you Congressman.

What you have to worry about. Most of you assume that Meyer are the only re-strikes. If you only knew. I would make a list but out of fear that a hit man would show up at my door I will not. You see for less than $1000 you now can make a die and start stamping. If you were to make a rare wing and only sell three at $350 your ahead. Or a WWI wing and just sell one. Have any of you noticed how all of a sudden Bell Trading Post paratrooper badges have popped up. I am willing to bet someone has started to make them. Even some of the companies that made the originals are still stamping out today 60 year old designs. Then the concept that somehow the companies stopped making wings, etc at the end of the war. Balfour up to the day they went out of business would make you on special order any item they had a die for. I have original Balfour WWII wings made in the 70's. Also don't forget the US Government still to this day buys old medals to give to families. I could ask for and get my father-in-laws WWII Medals, just fill out a form. Now they came from the government and were recently made. Is that a copy or real?

Our friends in Asia have been making WWII cloth for years and your black lights will do no good. You see as soon as you start a thread on how to ID some of these items the crooks will move into high gear to work around you. I know one dealer in the UK who will send an original to his manufacturer and get as many as he wants back and you can not tell. Except they are new looking. If he were to weather them you honestly can't. I worked in R&D at Wright-Patterson AFB and we needed to test what happens to parachute webbing over time. The Materials Laboratory was able in a matter of days to age the webbing to 10, 20, 30 years old. Its not hard if you have the equipment.

It's big money and all of you are guilty of spending. BTW- I have even told some collectors my item is a reproduction and they want it so bad to be real they don't believe me.

The primary factory is education and even then it would be limited to a few willing to read these posts. Even when I say an item is not right such as in the Campbell collection, some of you yell and scream it can't be true. Look at the last picture of the Campbell collection - can you spot the repro? Not one of mine but a repro never less.

And last - About Duncan Campbell telling me not to mark items, it was a three way conversation so I have a witness.

Joe

#28 brian e

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 09:15 PM

Why would anyone reproduce a bell jump wing they aren't worth anything i would bet someone found a box at a surplus auction or somewhere kind of like Mrs Wosk and the multiple cases of A.E.Co jump wings she has which are real.
I can believe duncans collection had some junk/ repo/fake/ fantacy piece or pieces in it not everyone is perfect in my collection of over 200 jump wings i have a couple of fakes i jumped at something i had seen in a book and had never seen one before and wasted $80 luckly it wasnt more so now i have a nice example to show people what to look for in a faked /made up wing brian

Edited by John Cooper, 22 May 2009 - 09:16 AM.


#29 graham

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 02:44 AM

why would anyone reproduce a bell jump wing they aren't worth anything i would bet someone found a box at a surplus auction or somewhere kind of like Mrs Wosk and the multiple cases of A.E.Co jump wings she has which are real.
I can believe duncans collection had some junk/ repo/fake/ fantacy piece or pieces in it not everyone is perfect in my collection of over 200 jump wings i have a couple of fakes i jumped at something i had seen in a book and had never seen one before and wasted $80 luckly it wasnt more so now i have a nice example to show people what to look for in a faked /made up wing brian


Dont make the assumption that because something is not worth much it will not be reproduced. Before I saw the light and converted to US militaria I collected British, I could buy original 39-45 stars all day long for £5 yet thet are reproed. RA, RE, RASC cap badges original £3-£4 and they are reproed !!
Ive just had a count up, I have 98 original [ I think] ww2 era USAAF, USN AND Airborne wings, BUT I also have 27 wings in my fake/repro, post ww2, good for comparison box. I used to hate reproes but sometimes i think they make the hunt more interesting. http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/think.gif

#30 Abby K-9

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 11:31 AM

@ *************** - please help me understand one thing. The argument you make above is, essentially, "everyone else is doing it" and "congress has not yet voted to require reproductions or copies to be marked" and therefore, you feel that you have no legal, ethical, or moral need to mark your products as reproductions, knowing full and well that many purchase them and then resell them as original. Is this, in fact, correct?

Edited by Abby K-9, 06 May 2009 - 11:32 AM.


#31 none

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 03:32 PM

@ *************** - please help me understand one thing. The argument you make above is, essentially, "everyone else is doing it" and "congress has not yet voted to require reproductions or copies to be marked" and therefore, you feel that you have no legal, ethical, or moral need to mark your products as reproductions, knowing full and well that many purchase them and then resell them as original. Is this, in fact, correct?


NO. Do you own a car, have you ever put a part on it that was not OEM? Nor was that non-OEM part marked as repro. But that is what it is. Do you have a Queen Ann chair? Or other furniture that was a copy of another period. Do you have a knock off shirt, watch, etc.

What you don't want to understand is that I believe if I mark them repro, I actually will increase the number sold as real. I know how easy it is to remove markings.

And you are correct I do not have a legal requirement to mark them as repro. Congress has passed limits on certain items that have to be marked (Copies of Stamps and coins) and they have chosen not to include wings. They have chosen to stop even ownership of MOHs. So if you feel it is wrong make it wrong for everyone.

If it was morally bad etc, I would not have any customers, since I am out in the open about them being reproductions. I have stopped selling to certain dealers who were selling my items as real. And some of these dealers sell to all of you all the time. I don't see their names listed anywhere on the forum. The odds are you don't even know who they are. These are the same ones who would remove the word repro or copy from any item. Someone talked about Vietnam patches with a "R" on them, how easy is it to remove that "R."

BTW- I currently have several people who have started to collect my wings. Many of them feel that 50, 100 years from now people will be hunting down my wings and having forum discussions on if that wing is a Joe type 1 or 2, etc. They think my catalog will be printed as a book etc. I think this is pretty funny.

As I said before if you think this is wrong, do something about it but do it for all.

I will be gone for the next six days without a computer so a lack of response is not on purpose.

Edited by John Cooper, 22 May 2009 - 08:55 AM.


#32 brian e

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 03:48 PM

But if there were copy or reproduction markings and they were removed i and others would notice that some one had filed, ground, removed something from the back of the wing and would not buy it.
If there is no marking to be removed there will be no traces of something being removed and it can be sold as original. I was burned on a crest craft pin back jump wing, there is no such thing the one in Geronimo is fake just like mine someone ground the 23C marking off i couldnt tell in the picture but when it was in hand i knew it was junk if they hadnt ground something off i would have never known so your logic on the copy mark could be removed is in my opinion is wrong brian errigo author of Identification Of The Wings Of The US Paratroopers And Glidermen

Edited by John Cooper, 22 May 2009 - 09:18 AM.


#33 J_Andrews

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 03:53 PM

About 20 years ago, a friend had jump and glidr wings made up with unit numbers above the canopy. He sold these to veterans of the units, and wound up making some for small and/or obscure units, per vets' requests.

I cannot count how many times I have seen these being offered as ORIGINAL AUTHENTIC RANK GENUINE,
some of them "aged", some even on ovals and with jump stars added.....

#34 88thcollector

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 04:49 PM

So mark them with incised letters. Filling deeply stamped in or engraved marks is a lot harder than polishing off a raised mark. This is a free country and you can make what you wish but I cannot fathom the concept that marking something fake makes it easier to pass off as real.

Edited by John Cooper, 22 May 2009 - 08:58 AM.


#35 John Cooper

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 09:06 PM

Ok guys this is starting to be like the question which came first the chicken or the egg... there are several sides represented here and eaach of you feels stongly about your opinion as you should. I would like this not to devolve into a battle like has happen on some of the 3rd Riech focused forums that have took on the feel of a lynch mob aginst one dealer that was selling very high end reproductions which are not marked and can fool all but a few since many of the awards are so expensive your likely not going to own one.

All I ask is that you please choose caution and reply without any emotion.


Now with that said here is a question for you - how many of you actively seek out well made copies to study?

I for one keep an eye out but have $ limits on what I spend. In fact I just bought what appears to be a Meyer restrike of the balloon wing. In my mind I want to get a close hands on inspection and look at the micro details.

John

#36 brian e

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 09:21 PM

Ok guys this is starting to be like the question which came first the chicken or the egg... there are several sides represented here and eaach of you feels stongly about your opinion as you should. I would like this not to devolve into a battle like has happen on some of the 3rd Riech focused forums that have took on the feel of a lynch mob aginst one dealer that was selling very high end reproductions which are not marked and can fool all but a few since many of the awards are so expensive your likely not going to own one.

All I ask is that you please choose caution and reply without any emotion.
Now with that said here is a question for you - how many of you actively seek out well made copies to study?

I for one keep an eye out but have $ limits on what I spend. In fact I just bought what appears to be a Meyer restrike of the balloon wing. In my mind I want to get a close hands on inspection and look at the micro details.

John

i would like to buy some repos, fakes, and fantasy pieces for the book im working on i would like to have a section of fakes, fantasys, and repos the gaunt jump and glider wings on the water spotted cards would be nice for this section but alot of people still think they are real so they cost to much maybe a chaplain wing or any of the weird device added wings would be nice also i only have two wings in my collection that i know of for sure that are not original one is a crest craft made into a pinback with the 23-C marking ground off and a fake 11th abn jump wing i had a few meyer restrikes that i was burned on from ebay but i gave them away to kids at the gun show.

#37 mshaw

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Posted 09 May 2009 - 03:50 PM

In a perfect world every repro would be properly marked as such... and every puppy would never become a dog and men would understand women. To this day, that cute puppy that my wife wanted is now MY dog ^_^ , I still don't understand women http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/pinch.gif and repro's continue to be made without any distinguishing markings showing them to be repro's http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/disgust.gif . This is done despite all the numerous threads we've seen on the subject. Until it becomes illegal we are left with two choices: 1) we can complain and things remain the same -or- 2) We can learn and educate collectors on what to watch for. I know it's a sad commentary but, a fact none the less.


Your only protection is education, education, education, and education. I collect Civil War, Indian Relics, WW II wings along with some other areas and they ALL are polluted with fakes. If there is money to be made, somebody will do it. Attacking Joe *************** is futile. He's not breaking any laws and if he stopped doing it, someone else would take his place. If everyone took the time to buy the books AND read them, study known good examples, talk to other informed collectors and generally learn all there is to know, your chances of getting burned are greatly reduced. Two good pieces of advice that smart collectors have given me over the years: 1. If it looks to good to be true, it most likely is. 2. See what you really see, not what you WANT to see. So the next time you see at Technical Observer wing going for $55 on ebay when you know reputable dealers get $400 + you have to remember those two pieces of advice. Can you still get burned? Yes...I have. If you can't live with that, stay away from collectibles.

#38 John Cooper

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Posted 09 May 2009 - 08:59 PM

Your only protection is education, education, education, and education. I collect Civil War, Indian Relics, WW II wings along with some other areas and they ALL are polluted with fakes. If there is money to be made, somebody will do it. Attacking Joe *************** is futile. He's not breaking any laws and if he stopped doing it, someone else would take his place. If everyone took the time to buy the books AND read them, study known good examples, talk to other informed collectors and generally learn all there is to know, your chances of getting burned are greatly reduced. Two good pieces of advice that smart collectors have given me over the years: 1. If it looks to good to be true, it most likely is. 2. See what you really see, not what you WANT to see. So the next time you see at Technical Observer wing going for $55 on ebay when you know reputable dealers get $400 + you have to remember those two pieces of advice. Can you still get burned? Yes...I have. If you can't live with that, stay away from collectibles.


Well said... I would only add join this forum :)

John

#39 none

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Posted 12 May 2009 - 04:38 AM

I have returned and see that the discussion is still hot and heavy.

I spotted a LeBreve wing on eBay 170330589804 and notice that the seller or someone had removed the incised name “LeBreve Paris” from the wing. This is the same seller of this wing a few months ago who I and others stopped from selling it as real. Well he is back and selling it as real without the name this time on the wing. It would be very hard to tell the words have been filled in.

On the question of moral and ethical conduct. This forum is not the place to discuss conduct what is moral and ethical to one is not to another. One religion has a set of values and next a different set, who is right. A gun dealer selling a gun that is then used in a crime…. Each society determines the rules they want to live by thru the rule of law.

But mshaw is correct the real answer is education. John Cooper asked me a long time ago to join to help educate all of you on how to determine reproductions. I have been happy to do this and point out factors on wings for you all to see and learn. He is correct in saying if I stop someone else will jump in, what many of you don’t know is that one master reproduction person has left wings and moved on to Civil War insignia because of my “cheap” reproductions and all of his items were die struck. He is a tool and die maker and you almost can’t tell his products. Most collectors can’t.

So buy the books, but don’t completely trust them, some have reproductions in them and some mistakes. If it comes from a collection or a vet or an estate, don’t just jump in as if has to be true and real. Look before you leap. Ask questions and learn.

Edited by weingarten, 12 May 2009 - 04:40 AM.


#40 John Cooper

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Posted 12 May 2009 - 06:28 PM

Speaking of reproductions besides at least 3 others have been sold.. here is an example: Ebay item # 400047655117

#41 none

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 09:15 AM

About marking copy - We have in the past talked about LeBreve and all WWI LeBreve are not real. A few months ago a LeBreve was listed on eBay and eBay removed the listing after I notified them about all the false claims.

Well go to 170330589804 and have a look at the same wing with LeBreve removed from the same seller.

Now with LeBreve removed it's a real wing, just like the word copy will be removed. Duncan's advice I still believe is correct.

Joe

#42 DwightPruitt

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 12:29 PM

But if there were copy or reproduction markings and they were removed i and others would notice that some one had filed, ground, removed something from the back of the wing and would not buy it.


I'm not trying to be a smart aleck, but it seems to me that if you would notice the removed copy markings, you'd also notice that Joe's wings are cast. Not die-struck, but cast. I've done business with Joe a couple of times and an in-hand inspection makes it obvious that regardless of markings, of pins or patterns, they aren't of WWII construction. A collector has the basic duty to himself to know what he buys.

This whole argument to me is akin to holding gun manufacturers liable for people that use firearms illegally.

Edited by DwightPruitt, 13 May 2009 - 12:32 PM.


#43 John Cooper

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Posted 15 May 2009 - 10:03 PM

IMHO auctions like this 170330081439 for a recently made ANGUS COOTE fall into the catagory of FRAUD in that these are die struck from the real dies as far as I know and have in the last year or so been a constant feature on Ebay.

All generally go for hundreds of dollars and are sold by many sellers... try doing a search and see how many are available any given month. I am not sure of the supplier but the flood of wings with this makers mark and one other maker from down under is BAD.

John

#44 KurtA

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Posted 16 May 2009 - 03:19 AM

IMHO auctions like this 170330081439 for a recently made ANGUS COOTE fall into the catagory of FRAUD in that these are die struck from the real dies as far as I know and have in the last year or so been a constant feature on Ebay.

All generally go for hundreds of dollars and are sold by many sellers... try doing a search and see how many are available any given month. I am not sure of the supplier but the flood of wings with this makers mark and one other maker from down under is BAD.

John

John-
I was burned on a pair of wings like these at a show (luckily I found the dealer 4 months later and got a refund). I don't believe they're the original dies, as the hallmark is much sharper on this fake. An original I have has a somewhat blurrier hallmark (letters aren't as sharp). The finish is also different from the original.
Fakes are getting too good. For this reason, I've stopped buying wings at shows and from dealer lists. Wings are going the way of WW2 German stuff - too many repro artists out there.
Kurt

#45 John Cooper

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Posted 16 May 2009 - 01:23 PM

Take a look at this 170332072738...

#46 none

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Posted 16 May 2009 - 04:43 PM

Take a look at this 170332072738...


This site is known for snowflake wings, etc.

#47 KurtA

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Posted 16 May 2009 - 07:16 PM

Take a look at this 170332072738...

Those are very convincing. I love the "guaranteed original" followed by "no returns."

#48 militarymodels

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 06:20 AM

Take a look at this 170332072738...


The details of the snowflakes on these are weak compared to the original IMO but it's still a dangerous fake.

On a side note, if the original company or the licensed manufactures continued producing or reproduced these wings/medals after the war time using their original dice, then I'd call it a reproduction. Otherwise, for those unlicensed manufactures/fakers who make copies that have the original companies' tradmarks on their copies without the consents of the original company, I'd consider them fake, fraud, falsify, counterfeit... the only reason they put the other people's no-longer-copyright trademarks on their copies is to decive the buyers/collectors for their own financial gains IMHO. They could have copy the exactly same patern but just leave the trademarks out although it's no longer copyrighted for decency's sake or just come up with their own trademarks. Forget about the whole "education" thing, that really has nothing to do with the topic of why fakers using the no longer copyright trademarks on their copies to decive buyers and stop finger pointing to the sellers. The sellers, on the other hand, is a different story as their are a few kinds of them out there.

By the way, does anybody know if the fakers even use the sterling material on the copies that marked sterling?

Regards,

Lonny

#49 fabiobelgio

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 08:54 AM

What about this medic jump wings ? Marked in the back sterling and probably with the NS Meyer shield...am I wrong ?
http://img4.imageshack.us/img4/4527/medice.jpg
http://img4.imageshack.us/img4/4586/medicback.jpg


Hi all,
I bought this jump wings in a shop in Bastogne (BE) called Militaria Bastogne www.militariabastogne.eu. The owner, Marco, fully reimbursed me and he was very sorry of the inconvenience. Last but not least he broke in front of me the wings so at least one fake is out of the market.
Regards
Fabio

#50 pfrost

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Posted 21 May 2009 - 06:07 PM

When I first found this forum, it seemed like a great place. Lots of neat things to see and lots of nice people to talk with about wings. Those of you who know me, have seen that I was always willing and excited to post pictures of wings and things that I found here and there. I never took anything personal and was always happy to discuss wings fairly, openly and with passion. Since I collect for myself, I never really worry that much about what other people think, but I like to hear of different perspectives and I feel that I have learned as much as I have taught.

Frequently, when a wing came into discussion that I felt was a fake, I would try to calmly and carefully describe why I felt the way I did. Sometimes, when a wing was described by a fake, I was also willing to go against the grain and argue that it was (perhaps) a good wing. At one point, we had maybe 5 or 6 of the worlds most respected US military wing collectors on this forum. We had specialists in WWI wings, WWII wings, USN, USAAF, etc. But not anymore it seems

It was also my feeling, that in general, this forum had plenty of room for people with different perspectives and ideas about collecting. If I did not like a thread, I would simply move on...maybe post a wing from my collection that I felt was interesting and worthy of discussion. Still, frankly I was appalled when rather than having a discussion about Duncan Campbell's collection, we were treated with assurances that there were "questionable items" for sale, but without any shred of evidence or proof. Ironically, one of those accusations of a wing that we were assured was a fake was later retracted. I made some statements in that thread, and was chastised for that. So I moved on, and simply decided I would stop posting for a bit.

Have fun gents and good wing hunting.

Patrick Frost

Edited by John Cooper, 22 May 2009 - 09:34 AM.



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